December 27th, 2012
03:55 PM ET

Making 'the greatest cookbook achievement of all time'

Editor's note: Nathan Myhrvold is CEO of Intellectual Ventures, author of "Modernist Cuisine" and "Modernist Cuisine at Home."

By Nina Raja, CNN

CNN: For people who don't know anything about it, how would you define modern cuisine?

MYHRVOLD: Modern cuisine is the movement of chefs that are trying to create new kinds of food, new food experiences. And they don't care if they have to break some of the traditional rules of cooking to do so.

CNN: There are so many cookbooks out there, what's different about your larger, 6-volume "Modernist Cuisine" book and your new 456-page publication "Modernist Cuisine at Home"?

MYHRVOLD: Well, you know, we set out to make a book that would explain how cooking worked and all of the techniques that modern chefs use, sort of the cutting edge of what the cooking world is.

Now a lot of home folks bought the book and use it and cook from it, but it's a little daunting to buy a six volume, 50-pound, 456-page book. And, of course, a number of the recipes are recipes that are just hard to do, that in fact, almost every chef in New York would find hard to do, much less somebody at home.

So we thought there was room to create a smaller book, a little bit less imposing, a little bit cheaper, where all of the recipes were designed to be done in a home kitchen by home cooks.

CNN: Can you briefly tell us how you got from working at Microsoft to working with food?

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Filed under: Books • Food • Innovation • The Next List • Video
November 21st, 2012
01:09 PM ET

Need a stiff, cold drink? Try liquid nitrogen

By The Next List Staff, CNN

(CNN) - This week, CNN's "The Next List" delves into the world of culinary science and gadgets as we introduce you to Dave Arnold, director of technology at the International Culinary Center. Arnold is one of the leaders of a "modernist" group of cutting-edge instructors, chefs and bartenders using science and high-tech tools to up-end traditional cooking methods.

Tune in Sunday at 2 p.m. ET to see a 30-min profile of Arnold on CNN.

Here's a primer on why he's fascinating enough to make "The Next List."

Why you've heard of him: You might have seen him cooling glasses with liquid nitrogen on “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon,” making drinks for Martha Stewart, or maybe you might have read about him in Popular Science, Food & Wine, or the New York Times. Arnold definitely isn't camera-shy. He has lots of video demonstrations circulating online. (See one such video below). FULL POST

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Filed under: Food • Innovation • The Next List
September 10th, 2012
12:55 PM ET

How to raise a ‘cleaner, fresher tasting fish’

By The Next List staff, CNN

(CNN) - Brian O’Hanlon learned long ago that the world’s supply of wild-caught seafood could never keep up with ever-increasing demand. He set his sights on solving the problem and today, O’Hanlon is the Founder and President of Open Blue, the world’s largest open-ocean fish farm.

O’Hanlon is raising fish far out at sea where the clean water and brisk currents are the natural place for fish to thrive. The fish are raised from eggs and everything they eat is controlled. That means they are free of contaminants like PCBs and mercury. To O’Hanlon, the mission is clear: “Our whole goal is to provide a more natural, healthier environment for the fish.”

O’Hanlon hopes his approach will be a model for the future of fish farming. His insight and innovative ideas are capturing the industry’s attention and providing a critical resource to a hungry world. Check out the video at the top of this post to learn more about his work.

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Filed under: Food • The Next List • Video
September 9th, 2012
03:00 PM ET

Chef: We are entering a 'new era of cooking and dining'

Editor's note: Louis DiBiccari calls himself the "mastermind of underground dinner parties." On his website, foodies vote for dinner themes and ingredients, then DiBiccari and team rush to plan a four-course meal in the span of a day.

By Louis DiBiccari, Special to CNN

What does it mean to be a chef? We can get restaurant jobs. We can work in any city we want. We have the talent to cook anywhere. But there’s more to it than that. We learned our trade in the confines of a tough business that weeds out the weak and embraces those who are truly dedicated to the industry. We don’t just cook. We need to create new and interesting experiences for the people who love our food. We need to push the envelope. We are pioneers exploring the Wild West of the culinary landscape. We are artists, and our canvas is a round, white plate, 10 inches in diameter. Because of this, dining experiences are evolving way beyond brick-and-mortar restaurants. Our attitude is simple. Cook your ass off ... that’s it. Wherever, whenever and for whomever.

We believe in food trucks. We believe in secret underground supper clubs. We believe in serving restaurant food in non-traditional places. We put on a show as we cook. We are inspired by ingredients, the harvest, and seasons. We are dedicated to those who work side by side with us and embrace our vision. We believe contributing to the culture of our cities. We believe in community, helping each other out, and building each other up. We cook with our souls regardless of where we are cooking because we cook to live and live to cook. Most of all, we are hungry to feed you.

As with any artistic endeavor, we need people to take in what we’ve created. Our guests are hungry for more than a white-linen, three-course dinner. They want to explore the culinary boundaries with us. They seek us out and spread the word - not on OpenTable or Zagat, but through word of mouth and social media. We are grateful for these people who crave creative culinary experiences, because without them we would have no way to express our need to cook outside of the box.

Nothing satisfies us more than to create opportunities for you, our guest, to escape and be entertained. Bring your friends. Bring your family. This is why we do what we do. We are excited to meet you in our restaurants, and now, in our food trucks, at our secret underground supper clubs and at Chef Louie Night. Like true artists, our need to create something new and exciting can’t be contained. Our passion for pushing the culinary envelope is as insatiable as our guests’ appetites. This is only the beginning of a brand new era of cooking and dining.

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Filed under: Food • The Next List • Video
September 7th, 2012
07:47 AM ET

To feed a growing population, 'bet on the ocean' and innovation

Editor's note: Brian O'Hanlon is a pioneer in aquaculture. He is raising fish in the swift waters of the open ocean, eight miles off the coast in Panama. CNN's "The Next List" will feature the founder of Open Blue on Sunday at 2 p.m. ET.

By Brian O'Hanlon, CNN

I once read an article in The Guardian that said this: Over the next 50 years humans will need to produce more food than all the food ever produced over the past 10,000 years combined. There is no disputing that our global food supply is stretched to the limit. We already use most of the farmland on the planet and have exhausted most of the world’s fisheries. Our ability to produce food, one of our great successes as a species, is rapidly depleting. If we do not innovate and seriously transform our methods for feeding the world’s population, we will soon find ourselves at a point where we can no longer feed our growing population.

A number of factors make aquaculture one of the most efficient forms of food production available, particularly open ocean fish farming. First, it’s important to understand that fish are cold-blooded, meaning they do not use lots of energy to warm their bodies, like chicken, pigs or cattle do. Fish use the water around them to support their bones while land-dwelling animals require large amounts of energy to support their bodies against gravity. Additionally, the water environment enables fish to occupy more space and grow in far larger quantities per square foot than any animal raised in a field. Simply put, fish waste less of our precious land. Let’s also not forget that land-raised protein, whether animal or crop, requires massive amounts of fresh water to grow. Aquaculture requires almost no fresh water for the fish to thrive. FULL POST

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Filed under: Food • The Next List • Video • World
September 4th, 2012
02:57 PM ET

Why we should 'farm the ocean like we farm the lands'

Editor's note: CNN's "The Next List" will feature Brian O'Hanlon, founder of Open Blue, on Sunday at 2 p.m. ET.

By The Next List Staff, CNN

(CNN) - The lure of the open ocean has long been the stuff of poetry. For Brian O’Hanlon, it led to his life’s work.

O’Hanlon is the founder and president of Open Blue, the largest open-ocean fish farm in the world. He’s also a pioneer in raising fish far out at sea. O’Hanlon believes that the depth of the water and swift currents make for a much healthier environment to raise fish than traditional farms near shore or on land. Aquaculture in the open ocean also avoids damaging sensitive coastal ecosystems.

O’Hanlon’s team raises the fish from eggs so they control their diet at every stage of development. FULL POST

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Filed under: Food • Future • Innovation • The Next List • Thinkers • Video
March 29th, 2012
01:18 PM ET

'The Next List': An archive of fascinating people

Every Sunday at 2 p.m. ET the CNN show 'The Next List' profiles a person with a new idea that could change the world. Here's a list of all of the innovators the show has featured since it started in November 2011. Check back for updates.

Hugh Herr, prosthetics developer and bionic man


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Filed under: Art • Culture • Design • Education • Fashion • Food • Future • Innovation • Music • Robots • Science • Social change • The Next List • Thinkers
November 25th, 2011
06:10 PM ET

The Michael Bolton Cookie

Chef Homaro Cantu's mind-blowing restaurant Moto is known for all sorts of off-the-wall dishes. But one of our favorites has to be the Michael Bolton cookie created by Pastry Chef Ben Roche.  Yes, let's say it again - a Michael Bolton cookie.

This 1991-styled dessert is served at the tail end of Moto's 15-course meal. Bolton's photo is printed on edible paper and topped off with chocolate mousse, raspberry sauce, and vanilla ice cream.

A 'Second City' secret supper with Homaru Cantu

See much more of Homaro Cantu on Sunday 2 p.m. ET on CNN's "The Next List."


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Filed under: Food • Innovation • The Next List • Uncategorized
November 23rd, 2011
04:06 PM ET

Chef Homaro Cantu: Sneak Peek

In the words of Chef Homaro Cantu, "a molecular gastronomist is really just someone who explores the world of science and food."  Cantu is a chef who uses tools you wouldn't ordinarily find in a kitchen – sonifiers, lasers, and super conductors to name a few.

To save paper, Cantu serves his customers with edible menus.  And have you ever 'flavor-tripped?'  When experimenting in his two Chicago restaurants, Moto and ING, the real thrill for him is to make "something impossible. Creating something that shouldn't be."

A 'Second City' secret supper with Homaru Cantu

Tune in to see Homaro Cantu make food beyond your wildest dreams and see why he's earned a spot on The Next List.

Sunday 2 p.m. E.T. on CNN, February 5th

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Filed under: Food • The Next List